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It’s Time to Replace Your Galvanized Pipes

If you have an older home, it’s worth finding out if you have the plumbing to match. Older plumbing systems often have galvanized pipes that are vulnerable to corrosion and hazardous to use. Removing these pipes and replacing them with modern plumbing pipes is necessary for a number of reasons. In this article, we will explain what a galvanized pipe is, why it’s bad for your home, and what you can do to fix the problem. What is a Galvanized Plumbing Pipe? If you have a home built before the 1960s, you may have galvanized plumbing pipes in your home. A galvanized pipe is an iron pipe that has been coated with a thin layer of zinc to increase the durability and longevity of the pipe. At the time, this was seen as a monumental breakthrough in plumbing, but over time the erosion of the zinc will lead to the formation of corrosion on the inside walls of the pipe. What are the Potential Hazards of Galvanized Pipes? There are several potential hazards that can be caused by having galvanized plumbing pipes in your home. The first issue is the formation of corrosion sediment; this can clog up your plumbing pipes and slow the flow of water through the pipes. If the clogging is extensive, this can even lower the water pressure throughout the entire home. This is inconvenient when you take a shower, but it can also affect many other aspects of your home, including the efficiency of your water using appliances. The second potential problem is caused by the corrosion of the zinc lining in the iron pipe. This can leach impurities into the water, including lead, and this is a threat to your health. Ingesting contaminants is a fast way to get sick; these types of impurities are hard to notice with your senses, and laboratory testing may be required to confirm their presence. Finally, as the pipe is weakened by the degradation of the zinc coating, the potential for undetected pinhole leads increases. When a pipe springs a leak, it generally occurs where two pipes meet or near a seal, and this makes it easy to spot the water leak. But, pinhole leaks are different, they can appear anywhere due to corrosion, and this can make them much harder to spot quickly. The longer the leak is undetected, the more water damage it can cause, and water damage can be expensive to fix. What Can You Do? If you think that your home has galvanized pipes, it makes sense to get them replaced with modern plumbing pipes now. A local certified plumber will be able to confirm that you have galvanized pipes, and they can offer advice on your options. The plumbing pipes can be replaced with more robust materials, such as copper or UPVC, that will not leach contaminants into your water supply. This may seem like a massive undertaking, but modern plumbing can be fast and efficient if you choose the right local plumbing company. By Giovanni Longo President Flood Brothers Plumbing Giovanni Longo is a 3rd generation master plumber who has been practicing his craft and trade in the greater Los Angeles area for well over a decade and a half. A plumbing and hydraulics-engineering innovator, Giovanni’s particular world-class expertise focuses on dealing with challenging sewer system designs as well as resolving complex commercial and residential draining issues. As a certified Flood Mitigation expert, he is also well versed in a wide variety of water damage and remediation solution.